One interesting thing in the whole adware themes discussion is the people claiming if we require GPL it’ll kill the number and quality of themes out there, that the best themes have ads in them, that they couldn’t make themes if they weren’t getting the SEO gaming money, et cetera and so on.
There are two types of WordPress add-ons, themes and plugins. Are there any similarities?
- Plugins are just as hard or harder to write and design as themes.
- All plugins in our directory are required to be GPL or compatible.
- Plugin authors almost never get links on the front-end of a blog.
- I’m not aware of any plugins that bundle advertising with the intention of gaming search engines, like themes are.
Despite all of this, the plugin ecosystem around WordPress is flourishing, especially since we made the plugin directory, and hundreds have been added. It seems any of the doomsday scenarios people are expecting to happen to themes would have happened to plugins years ago. If ad-bundled themes really are better, a suggestion I find insulting to all those who volunteer their time for WordPress, then maybe they should start their own theme directory with only adware themes and they should get a ton of traffic.
(And just to respond to the title, I think plugin authors get tons of love, and hopefully we can help them get more with upcoming revisions to the plugin directory.)